Construction of the Temple and Palace

1 Kings 6-7

It’s difficult to appreciate how much time elapses in reading through the Old Testament. Chapter 6 begins by simply stating that Solomon’s construction project began in the fourth year of his reign as king. For three years he planned the construction effort. The foundation was laid in the fourth year and the temple completed in the eleventh year–eight years to build!

So Solomon built the temple and completed it. 1 Kings 6:14

Well, Solomon gets the credit, but thousands of workers actually built the temple!

Interestingly, he spent 13 years building his palace. At first, I thought this was a concurrent project that to an extended time because of the work on the Temple, but 2 Kings 9:10 tells us it took 20 years to complete both structures–20 years!

In the course of building, Solomon and Huram (king of Tyre) have no doubt established some significant bonds. In 2 Samuel 5, we read about the king of Tyre (Hiram) and his relationship with David, supplying cedars in particular. The notes on the Bible suggest that Hiram and Huram are either the same guy (really old by this time) or Huram is the son of Hiram who carried on the legacy. The reference in 2 Chronicles 2 identifies king Hiram of Tyre. Well…I’m not knowledgeable enough to know the importance, but it is quite interesting to know the deep connection between Jerusalem and Tyre.

Isaiah 23 provides a prophecy against Tyre as it appears the wealth and success, fame and fortune, led to arrogance and pride. Ezekiel 28 gives even more insight into the decay of Tyre. This important city is talked about in several parts of the Bible. It would be an interesting side study to research it a bit. Some day.

I’ve glossed over the details of the Temple and Palace, but it is obvious that much care was taken in creating each and every part of these structures; care for the architecture as well as everything inside and outside. For architects, this must sound like a beautiful song! Everything carefully made and placed for a very specific reason. Frank Lloyd Wright would be pleased. Perhaps this reinforces the concept of God as one of order and not chaos.

The good news is there is no lengthy description of someone creating a bigger-than-life statue of Solomon (or even David). No reference to Solomon drawing attention to himself. Everything that is built has a purpose and the intention is to honor God in every single detail.

When all the work King Solomon had done for the temple of the Lord was finished, he brought in the things his father David had dedicated–the silver and gold and the furnishings–and he placed them in the treasuries of the Lord’s temple. 1 Kings 7:51

Everything for God and for His Glory. I hope I can learn that lesson and give all I can for Christ today.

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Let the Word evoke words. May your life encourage lives.

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